Mobilize Maine Looks To Capitalize On Maine’s Existing Assets 

In the first of 5 foundation meetings an initiative known as Mobilize Maine is spreading their own message of economic change. Mike Aube is the President of the Eastern Maine Development Corporation who formed the coalition. “It’s a very different process than the last 35-40 years in Maine,” Aube says, “where we’ve gotten together, written a strategy, sent it to Washington, sent it to Augusta, and it sits there and no one does anything.”Mobilize Maine’s strategy is simple, capitalize on existing advantages right here in Bangor, as well as other cities and counties here in Maine. “You can look at assets from infrastructure, in terms of the airport and what does that mean in terms of opportunity, the river what does that mean in terms of opportunity,” Aube says, “those are just physical activities, but I think workforce development.”Miles Theeman is the President & CEO of Affiliated Health Care System and he says he has faith in Mainers to help themselves. “I absolutely believe in this region,” Theeman says, “and I think Mobilize Maine provides a great opportunity for us to really capture the assets that we have in this region and begin to move forward for a variety of economic development opportunities.” The meeting today focused on getting community feedbackand also letting folks know the foundation of this project is built on assets, not a wish list. “We’re not gonna say I wish we had this but rather here’s what we got, how do we take what we have, and build upon that and go forward.”The folks here say their emphasis is on empowerment. “I think more importantly it says we can do it ourselves, yeah we’ll partner and collaborate with federal and state players but we can’t wait for those solutions to be handed down,” Aube says, “we have pride in what we have as a community and as a region and we’re gonna move forward and take advantage of that situation.”